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hunalkuwait

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Is it always us against them? does there always have to be a them?

Iran Against the Arabs

by Michael Rubin
Wall Street Journal

July 19, 2006


Most Arabs perceive Israel as small. Egypt -- home to one of every three Arabs -- has enjoyed a cold peace with Israel for more than a quarter-century. Gulf states, on the whole, would rather make money than directly fight Israel. While they do not like Israel's existence, Jerusalem presents no threat. Not so Tehran. A giant with 70 million people, Iran is no status quo power. Its ideological commitment to export revolution is real. Across Lebanon and the region, Arab leaders see Hezbollah for what it is: An arm of Iranian influence waging a sectarian battle in the heart of the Middle East.

An old Arab proverb goes, "Me against my brother; me and my brother against our cousin; and me, my brother and my cousin against the stranger." Forced to make a choice, Sunni Arabs are deciding: The Jews are cousins; the Shiites, strangers. U.S. diplomats may applaud the new pragmatism, but the reason behind it is nothing to celebrate.


Mr. Rubin, a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, is editor of the Middle East Quarterly.

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The is a short excerpt. The rest can be found on the ME Forum site.


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